The World Footbag Championships are back in America

After two years in Europe (2008 Prague, 2009 Berlin) the World Footbag Championships were back to the US, precisely in Oakland, California. The venue for this tournament was directly inside the hotel after a couple of days in a park nearby to play the preliminary matches. The huge conference areas at the Marriott in Oakland, CA were fitted with carpet and sport court and banners for sponsors. (Pro Kicker was there). It was very convenient for the players who stayed at the hotel to go back and forth, get rest quickly in the rooms and  battle on the courts while enjoying the pool and the nice Californian weather.
Here are a few previews of the finals matches.

You can see the complete matches with scores and slow motion on this video on demand page

Some of the finals were outrageously good. I especially enjoyed the doubles finals, a classic Germans versus Aki Québec brawl. Find all the details below.
Another great match featured German Florian Götze meeting Tuomas Kärki from Finland in the singles finals.

Both the mixed doubles and women doubles finals displayed good moments but also too many unforced errors although the mixed was of higher quality.
One of the finals was not played as Russian finalist Yulia Tikhomirova had to head back early and ,thus, had to forfeit her fight for the women singles championship. Geneviève Bousquet inherited the title, her first in singles at a World Championships.

August 1-7, 2010
Oakland, California, USA
Finals matches :

Women singles net finals

Geneviève Bousquet from Montreal, Canada - Club Aki Québec vs
Yulia Tikhomirova from Moscow, Russia - Club Footbag Moscow

Format: Best of 3 games to 15 points - side out scoring

Forfait Yulia Tikhomirova
Winner: Geneviève Bousquet

Note: Geneviève and Yulia met in pool play and Bousquet won the match.

Open singles net finals

Tuomas Kärki from Helsinki, Finland - Club Footbag Finland  vs
Florian Götze, Frankfurt, Germany - Club Frankfurt Footbag e.v

Format: 3 games to 15 points - side out scoring

Historical moment: This match marked the first Open title in Footbag Finland’s history, in any of the 5 net categories. After Tuomas and Florian split the two first sets we were lucky to witness a real good
third game. Lots of spikes, digs and strenuous rallyes were distributed by the protagonists of one of the best open singles finals in a long time. A bit of controversy zested the whole mix while head judge Ted Fritsch overturned  a few decisions of the line judges, always ruling against Götze. I can tell you that Florian wasn’t too happy about that. On the other hand Tuomas Kärki kept his concentration in all of this and played systematically and aggressively until he bagged the victory. He made the headlines of a newspaper in Helsinki the next day.
Kärki wins in 3  sets 15-9 6-15 15-13

Women doubles net finals

Jody Welch + Julie Symons from  California, USA - Club , Chaos Footbag  vs
Lisa McDaniel from  California, USA - Club , Chaos Footbag  + Geneviève Bousquet from Montreal, Canada - Club Aki Québec, both representing Pro Kicker

Format: 3 games to 15 points- side out scoring

Kind of a roller coaster there. After a great start taking a 3-0 lead Bousquet and McDaniel didn’t score another point in game 1. They had the most spectacular shots but also the most catastrophic errors, of the unforced category.  Game 2 offered a lot more rallyes but still to the same avail. The experience of Welch and Symons served them well while they bent in front of the aggressions of the other team but never breaked.
Symons and Welch earn the gold medal in 2 straight sets 15-3 15-11

Advanced statistics available for this match

Mixed doubles net finals

PT Lovern + Jody Welch from  California, USA – Club: Chaos Footbag  vs
Luc Legault  + Geneviève Bousquet from Montreal, Canada – Club: Aki Québec representing Pro Kicker

Format: 3 games to 15 points- side out scoring (You need the serve to score)

PT Lovern and Jody Wech are no strangers to World titles. It showed in their match against Luc Legault and Geneviève Bousquet. Although the Quebecers played with a lot of energy they were met by an equally dynamic Chaos team. There was a lot of action in that match. Points were not easy to cash in as both teams took their opponent’s serve a few times before some key points were finally registered. Game 2 was tight until 12-12. Overall the Californians showed more organization in the construction of their plays and were probably less nervous.
Chaos Footbag  wins by 15-8 15-12

Open doubles net finals

Florian Götze from Frankfurt, Germany - Club Frankfurt Footbag e.v. + Patrick Schrickel from Germany (lives in California) - Clubs FC Footstar and Chaos vs
François Depatie-Pelletier + Gilles Demers from Montreal, Canada - Club Aki Québec

Format: 3 games to 15 points- side out scoring (You need the serve to score)

This might be the best match I’ve ever recorded. Three action packed sets in a greatly fought meeting between the two best teams of the tournament. There was no surprise this time, these players had to get in each other’s faces. Spikes, digs, rallyes, jousts, blocks and a total of two hours thirthy minutes of drama were showcased by these highly skilled kickers. Unfortunately  a team had to loose the competition and I was sad to see my teammates from Montreal drop it in the very last moments of the match. Florian Götze came up with a key block at the 91st play of game three that kind of turned the momentum. Instead of having a 14-14 game the germans took back the serve at 14-13 and three plays later they were World Champions for the fourth time in five years.

Germany triumphs 12-15 15-11 15-13

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